Cast & Crew
Frankie O'Reilly, an elevator operator at the Carlton Arms, becomes embroiled in a murder investigation when he and his friend, parking attendant Jeff, witness the gangland murder of one of their tenants, Hal Dayton. Frankie calls his police detective brother Tom, who is under pressure from the Star-Tribune newspaper because his precinct has been unable to halt a recent crime wave. With Frankie's unwelcome help, Tom questions Dayton's friend, Dick Whitney, a wealthy young retiree who lives in the same building. Urged on by his girl friend, Sonya Varney, Whitney admits that Dayton was a gambler, but insists he was honest. Later, Tom takes Frankie and Jeff to the precinct to look at mug shots, and they recognize a photograph of Whitney, who was once arrested for embezzlement. After getting permission from the building manager, Haskell, Tom asks Frankie and Jeff to follow Whitney. Jeff soon learns that Whitney packs a gun, and they follow him to the Ringside gambling club, which is operated by gangster Johnny Burke. Whitney catches them following him, and asks Frankie to call the police if he does not leave the club in ten minutes. Inside, Burke is warned by Sonya, his former girl friend, that Whitney is coming after him, but Whitney disarms the gangster and demands Dayton's $60,000. Although he obtains the money, Whitney is unable to leave the club because the thugs who killed Dayton are guarding the door. Frankie and Jeff find Whitney inside, and after giving Frankie the envelope of money addressed to Dayton's sister Joyce, he insists they call the police. By the time Tom's squad raids the club, it is completely deserted. Reporters take a candid photograph of the police reconstructing the scene and use it to humiliate Tom in print. Later, Frankie is shocked to discover the contents of the envelope, and hides it in the building's little-used furnace. When Haskell asks Frankie to fix the elevator, which appears to be stuck, Frankie and Jeff discover that Whitney's body has been thrown on top of the elevator. Bullets from Whitney's and Dayton's murders match, and while the police are searching Whitney's apartment, Tom's fiancée, switchboard operator Margie, patches through a call to Frankie from Sonya. Sonya pretends to be Joyce and asks Frankie to deliver the money to her at a certain address. Haskell then panics when he learns where Frankie hid the money because he is burning trash in the furnace. Jeff, however, has relocated the money in the washing machine, and reporters get a photograph of Tom and Frankie drying out the laundered cash. Frankie realizes that "Joyce's" call must be a trap because she could never have known about him. When he and Jeff go to Sonya's address, they find the apartment ransacked and Tom bound and gagged in a closet. Tom is demoted for bungling the investigation and losing the $60,000. Later, Frankie gets a call from the real Joyce and they arrange to meet. Joyce informs Frankie and Jeff that her brother used to mention Burke in his letters. When Jeff reveals that his girl friend is Sonya's maid, and that Sonya was Burke's former girl friend, Frankie heads for Sonya's apartment, after giving the address to Margie with instructions to call Tom. Sonya confesses that Burke murdered Dayton and Whitney because Dayton framed him by playing a longshot with inside information. Although Burke has given Sonya twelve hours to leave town, his thugs take her, Frankie and Jeff hostage until Burke arrives. Burke forces everyone into the freight elevator just as police surround the building, but on a cue from Frankie, Jeff pushes the emergency button, and the elevator halts, allowing Tom and the police to capture the gangsters.